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i46             A SEARCH IN SECRET EGYPT
to mankind, and as they all received revelation from Him. Muslims are enjoined to believe in the prophethood of all of them, without distinction. Thus saith the Lord:
" 'Say ye believers: "We believe in Allah and that which hath been sent down unto us, and that which hath been sent down unto Abraham and Ismael and Isaac and Jacob and his offspring and that which was given to Moses and Jesus, and that which was given to the Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them and to Allah we are resigned." ' "
Again the answer had come only after His Eminence had thought it over well.
"Do you think that no num can help another to find God? I mention this because the absence of priests in your religion is so striking,"
"Yes, there are no priests between man and God in Islam, but, nevertheless, we have learned Muslims who can teach others the way of God as it is laid down in the Quran> and in the sayings and doings of the Prophet Muhammed.
"These are some of the principles ordained by Islam, without which no one could be worthy of being called a Muslim, and which do not differ from the principles of all religions that Allah has sent down to us through His Apostles. Islam, which is not the only religion that enjoins the belief in the unity of God, and which ordains obedience to God's injunctions, was not sent exclusively to Muhammed (Peace be upon him) but it is God's religion which He has sent down through all Prophets and Apostles. Saith Allah:
" * Verily the true Religion with Allah is Islam and none other is acceptable unto Him; and those who were given the Scriptures differed not concerning it until they knew the truth, through entity and mutual jealousy/
"Thus we group our people into those who have studied deeply our religious lore, and those who have not done so. We respect and listen to the first class; but we do not regard them as inspired men—only as intellectual men. No Muslim can say this or that is forbidden to you, because God alone possesses the authority to do so. There are no intermediaries with God, in our faith. That is a foundation stone of Islam. But we recognize and respect those who devote their lives to sacred study, and we go to them for their opinions and advice.